How to Deal with Negative Interview / Application Feedback

Scenario 1

job-keyboardYou have had several job interviews at different companies for similar roles, but still no job offers. Are you doing something wrong?

You may not be doing anything wrong but being aware that you are competing for jobs in a highly competitive job market is critical. Although you may have 90% of the required qualifications for the position, the employer may be in a position to find someone with 100%! While this is frustrating, it is not uncommon for people to feel that they have been rejected. In seeking out new employment, there has always been the risk of not being selected. Although this hasn’t been the case in recent years, it is becoming more frequent for job seekers today.

What is important is to keep focused on getting interviews that are relevant to you. Take confidence in getting recognised from a company as there are numerous applicants for each position. If your application has caught someone’s attention, then you are on the right track.

Remember “If you’re not getting rejected enough, you’re not working hard enough at getting interviews”!

Scenario 2

Is there something wrong with your interview / application strategy?

Only send out applications that are relevant to what you have done or inform them that you have a genuine interest in moving into a new area. If you spread yourself too thin, most HR professionals will get a sense of desperation from your application and will respond accordingly. During the interview, give specifics rather that generalist answers that you have prepared and perfected. It’s about grabbing their attention quickly so make it interesting by giving them exactly what they want…..and more. If not, you are probably going to end up as one of the applicants who didn’t stand out!

It’s also important to have the ability to confidently deliver your “Elevator Pitch” or “30 Second Pitch” about who you are, what you have done and how you are going to add value to the organization.

The opposite is also true in that you must be able to give examples of your weaknesses. However, be careful not to give a weakness that is a core competency of the job. Most interviews will allow you to ask questions and questions that show
you have researched the company and role are a minimum requirement. Other questions that probe beyond the scope of the role and focus more on the company strategy are recommended.

Scenario 3

Looking back, you now realize that you could have answered some interview questions better. What do you do next?

You’ve got to view it as a learning experience and understand that the chances of you being asked a similar question at your next interview is highly probable. Look at ways that you can get some practical interview experience. Join network groups, ask family and friends to help get you some interview experience. It is all about getting yourself ready for the phone call that advises you that you have been selected for an interview for the role you’ve been waiting for. Getting experience at interviews is always beneficial as each interview will take on a different format, different questions and most of all, opportunities for you to improve your responses.

Remember the story of a young musician who was in New York for the first
time to see a show at Carneige Hall. He was looking for directions and asked a New Yorker how to get to Carneige Hall?” The man replies, “Practice, Practice, Practice!”